Cover photo for David T. Salling's Obituary
David T. Salling Profile Photo

David T. Salling

January 2, 1942 — March 30, 2024

Chippewa Falls

David T. Salling

Dave Salling, known affectionately as “Satch” and “Trapper”, lived a rich and fulfilling life deeply rooted in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. Born on January 2nd, 1942, to Theodore Salling and Marjorie McCarty, he embodied the spirit of his hometown. Dave's journey was marked by remarkable achievements and cherished connections.

Graduating from Chi-Hi in 1960, Dave showcased his athletic prowess by lettering in three sports, leaving an indelible mark on his high school years. Following his graduation, he served his country for two years in the Air Force and later spent another two years in Houston, TX, contributing his skills to NASA. Returning to Chippewa Falls, he immersed himself in various jobs, ultimately retiring in 2012 as the beloved camp director at Camp Nawakwa. Through his role, he forged lifelong friendships with people from across the globe, creating a tapestry of connections that enriched his life.

Satch was a familiar face on the fast-pitch softball fields of Chippewa, where he displayed his athletic prowess. An avid sports enthusiast, he was renowned for his unbeatable knowledge of Wisconsin sports trivia. Beyond sports, Dave found joy in gardening, woodworking, baking, and the serenity of Northwoods camping. His adventurous spirit also led him to enjoy the occasional trip to the casino. He was also very proud of his 40 plus years of sobriety. Overall, his greatest joys later in life were his 2 dogs, BacPac, the camp mascot and SweetPea, who he preceded.

Dave passed away peacefully on March 30th, 2024 in Chippewa Falls after a short illness. Dave's passing leaves a void that will be deeply felt by his children, Lisa Vadnais, Greta Lambert, Jon Salling, as well as his grandchildren, Adam (Jessica) Vadnais, Josh Vadnais, Noelle Lambert (Ian Porter), Holli Lambert, Kerstyn Lambert and those he loved as his own Sarah and Kyra Leavesseur. His passing also weighs heavily on his lifelong best friend Joe Sarazen. He will be deeply missed by all whose lives he touched. 

A celebration of life will be held on Saturday May 25th from 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. at “Our Nawakwa”, formerly known as Camp Nawakwa located at 25336 County Hwy E, Cornell, WI. Anyone is welcome to come and join his family and friends to share a meal that will be provided.

In lieu of flowers, the family request that memorial donations be made to the “Our Nawakwa Connecting Youth to Nature Pass-through Fund” through the Community Foundation of Chippewa County, PO Box 153 Chippewa Falls, WI 54729 or on-line at 

The family would love to welcome anyone who has been touched by Dave’s life to share their memories and stories with the family by either connecting through Facebook on Dave’s profile, written letters, or in person during his celebration of life. Thank you in advance for all of the support and kindness.

To order memorial trees in memory of David T. Salling, please visit our tree store.

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, May 25, 2024

11:00am - 4:00 pm (Central time)

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